New Voices Award

New Voices Award Now Open for Submissions
New Voices CollectionLEE & LOW BOOKS is pleased to announce the seventeenth annual New Voices Award. The Award will be given for a children’s picture book manuscript by a new writer of color.

Established in 2000, the New Voices Award encourages writers of color to submit their work to a publisher that takes pride in nurturing new talent. Past New Voices Award submissions they have published include The Blue Roses (by our own Linda Boyden—WOOT!), winner of the Paterson Prize for Books for Young People; Sixteen Years in Sixteen Seconds: The Sammy Lee Story, a Texas Bluebonnet Masterlist selection; and It Jes’ Happened: When Bill Traylor Started to Draw, winner of the Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award Honor.


  1. The contest is open to writers of color who are residents of the United States, 18 years or older at the time of entry, and who have not previously had a children’s picture book published.
  2. Writers who have published work in other venues and genres, including children’s magazines, young adult, and adult fiction or nonfiction, are eligible. Only unagented submissions will be accepted.
  3. Work that has been published in any format, including online and self published, is not eligible.
  4. Manuscripts previously submitted for this award or to LEE & LOW BOOKS will not be considered.

Prize: The Award winner receives a cash prize of $1000 and our standard publication contract, including our basic advance and royalties for a first time author. An Honor Award winner will receive a cash prize of $500.

Manuscripts will be accepted from May 1, 2016 through September 30, 2016 and must be postmarked within that period. For full eligibility and submissions guidelines information, visit our website.

Help us spread the word! Download a printable PDF of the submissions guidelines to share with writers who may be interested.